The Map Reader edited by Martin Dodge, Rob Kitchin & Chris Perkins - Book review

The Map Reader

Theories of Mapping Practice and Cartographic Representation

By: Martin Dodge, Rob Kitchin, Chris Perkins

Published: July 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover, 504 pages
ISBN-10: 0470742836
ISBN-13: 978-0470742839
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

"The ability to create and use maps is one of the most basic means of human communication, at least as old as the invention of language and, arguably, as significant as the development of mathematics", write Senior Lecturers on Human Geography in the \School of the Environment, and Development, the University of Manchester, martin Dodge and Chris Perkins, and Professor of Geography, National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Rob Kitchin, in their comprehensive and scholarly mapping anthology The Map Reader: Theories of Mapping Practice and Cartographic Representation. The authors present fifty-four of the classic essays on mapping and cartography, that explore the discipline of cartography as a representational form, and the scholarly concept of mapping practices.

Martin Dodge (photo left), Rob Kitchin, and Chris Perkins share selected articles that address the practice of cartography through key mapping practices, techniques, and theory. The collection also provides a context based approach to map making that considers the overall Human Geography field, including people, politics, design aesthetics, and the relevant technology. In the introductory essay, the authors themselves address the concept of mapping in a historical and evolutionary context. The editors provide an approachable primer for students, researchers, and non-professionals to the leading cartographic research over the past fifty years.

Rob Kitchn (photo left), Chris Perkins, and Martin Dodge recognize that their historical context approach to the subject may appear out of place in an era of rapid change in map making techniques and technology. Through this developmental path, the editors place the contemporary advances and development in the field in a larger context. The editors also offer a very diverse group of essays that examine map making and cartography through many different lenses and disciplines. The book consists of fifty-four classic articles that are organized into five major thematic groupings:

* Concepts
* Technologies
* Aesthetics and design
* Cognition and culture
* Politics and power

Chris Perkins (photo left), Martin Dodge, and Rob Kitchin offer a clear and all inclusive examination of maps, map making and cartography in an accessible format, that is both fully indexed and well formatted. One of the real powers of the book for me, is the liberal use of hundreds of full color illustrations and black and white graphics that provide visual support to the essays. Another real strength of the book is its multi-disciplinary format that includes thought provoking articles that touch on the many aspects of map making beyond the technical and technology involved in their creation. Overall, this book provides a complete and definitive collection of essays that chronicle the theoretical and technical development of the field of map making and cartography over the past half century.

I highly recommend the landmark anthology The Map Reader: Theories of Mapping Practice and Cartographic Representation edited by Martin Dodge, Rob Kitchin, and Chris Perkins, to any students, researchers, and interested non-professionals in the areas of cartography, mapping technology, GIScience, social sciences, the media, the visual arts, and industry who are seeking a complete resource on the topic of map making. The articles cover every aspect of this rapidly changing field, written by leading scholars in many very diverse disciplines.

Read the seminal map making development collection The Map Reader: Theories of Mapping Practice and Cartographic Representation edited by Martin Dodge, Rob Kitchin, and Chris Perkins, and discover the evolution of this dynamic and important area of study. For any business people in industries that require maps and an understanding of the lay of the land, this book provides the background as to how those essential maps are created in an approachable format.

Tags: , , , .